In 1973, Williams BMW Group, a dealership in northern England, sold a new BMW 2002. Earlier this month, the dealership reacquired the car, in need of restoration after 20 years in dry storage, at H&H Classics auction at Duxford.
H&H’s head of operations, Iain Burt, once worked at Williams BMW and notified his former employer that the car had been consigned to the docket. The dealership sent its group buyer, Adam Kirkpatrick, to the auction preview where, as H&H reports, “He was very keen to acquire the car as it was complete with all of the original dealer paperwork right down to a business card.”
Kirkpatrick obtained a bidder’s number and the dealership reacquired the car it had sold 45 years ago and plans to restore it to showroom condition.
“The moment I saw the car I knew that we would want it back if we could win it at auction,” Kirkpatrick is quoted in the H&H news release.
“This was one of those serendipitous things that happen when you just happen to be in the right place at the right time,” Burt added. “I was delighted to be able to make the connection back to the car’s original supplier in the UK.”
The 1991 BMW was a 2-owner car, sold new by the dealership and then re-sold by the buyer in 1991. It had been in dry storage since 1998 and was sold with its original book pack and two sets of keys.
The auction catalog noted that the car was “based on a shortened version of the ‘Neue Klasse’ Saloons, BMW’s 02 Series launched in 1966 with the 1600-2 (1600cc/2-door), whose moniker was quickly simplified to 1602. Seeking a more powerful version, BMW then inserted the 1990cc M10 engine from the 2000CS Coupe to produce the 2002 – thereby spawning one of the finest sporting Saloons of the 1960s. The performance was decidedly brisk for the period, with 60mph achievable in 11.3 seconds and a top speed of 108mph.”
Williams BMW Group dates to 1909 when John Henry Williams opened a wheelwright repair shop in Manchester and serviced horse-drawn vehicles in London and for the North Western Railways. The company began toing motorcar maintenance in 1926 and owned the first “break down truck” in Manchester.
After World War II, it became a car dealership selling products of British automaker Rootes, and in 1976 launched BMW and Citroen franchises.mIt operates five retail stores selling BMW, Mini, Land Rover and Jaguar cars as well as BMW motorcycles.